Life is wonderful, and strange.
My name is Gabriel, and I’m a brand new Army husband. I never expected to get married, and I definitely didn’t expect to marry a soldier. But, that all happened thanks to an amazing young woman that I met by chance some years ago. We became best friends, then a couple, and then she enlisted to serve the country. I was equally proud and scared. I was proud to see the woman I loved following her dreams and making a difference in this world. I was scared to see how far those dreams separated her from me. She went through her military training, and I finished my college education. We were on opposite sides of the country for two years, and the distance and intense schedules on both ends were overwhelming. There were many times during our dating and then engagement that we thought we couldn’t make it work. The strain was hard, and we kept trying to love harder.
As professionals and immigrants, my parents had incredibly high standards for who they considered worthy to join the family. My fiancée didn’t meet those standards. I’m not sure anyone could, in all honesty. My parents gave me an ultimatum: I had to leave the love of my life, or they would make me leave the family. I was broken-hearted. I just wanted the people I cared for most to love and accept one another.
My family turned up the pressure through finances. Though they had the means, they told me that unless I ended my relationship, they wouldn’t continue to help me through college. I was a senior, and only had one more year before I earned my degree. I love learning, and want to be a teacher to help others find that same love. I couldn’t give up on all those kids that I could help in the future. I also couldn’t leave my fiancée for financial security. So, I took out loans to finish my school on my own, I worked multiple jobs, and I was able to finish my education without my family’s support. I graduated, but ended up with a large amount of debt from the loans that paid for my senior year.
With my school finished and my family rejecting my other half, I moved out to my fiancée’s duty station. We were married, and recently found a house together on her military base. In the 5 months since then, I’ve been working any and every job that I can find. Even though I have a degree, finding a stable and well-paying job has been a bigger challenge than I expected. The monthly payments on my college loans on top of normal living expenses has made our financial situation very tight.
We are both working our hardest and trying our best. It’s just not enough right now though. Being a country away from the community and support we once had, starting an independent life has been challenging.
I want to be a help and blessing to my wife, and work as hard as I can to make that a reality. I’m going to find a better job so I can make that happen. In the weeks or months until I can, we could really use some help getting through this time. We are a few hundred dollars short at the end of every month, though we are very frugal and budget out all our expenses.
Any amount of money to help make ends meet until we get our feet under us would be a tremendous blessing. Once I am in a better financial position, I’m resolved to pay any help forward by helping other struggling people in the same way. I’m hoping and praying for support through this period of transition.
God bless and thank you all.